on Writing Forward:
I’m a writer, but before I’m a writer, I’m a human being. And as a human being, sometimes I make mistakes.
Let’s face it, we all make mistakes — some big, some small. Today I want to talk about what happens when we, as writers, make a mistake in our work: a typo, an incorrectly structured sentence, or a misspelling.
When writers make mistakes like these, it can be embarrassing. Occasionally when I’m going through old posts here at Writing Forward, I’ll come across some typo or mistake and I’ll fix it.
I do everything I can to ensure that this happens as rarely as possible; I proofread everything I write from my blog posts to my comments, tweets, and e-mails. But sometimes mistakes slip past.
There was a time when I’d catch one of my own (published) mistakes and be completely horrified. I could feel my neck and face turning red from embarrassment, and even though I’d fix the mistake, it would haunt me for hours. Had it caused me to lose a reader or a client? How many people noticed it? I just wanted to crawl under a rock — even if it was just one little typo.
In time I learned to be more forgiving. After all, a typo is not the end of the world. I’ve found them in some of the most prestigious publications in print and online. And in the larger scope of the world, getting bent out of shape over a grammatical, orthographical, or typographical error seems pretty petty.